Edinburgh too good for Dragons
PRO14 REPORT: Edinburgh kept up the pressure at the top of Conference B in the Pro14 as Cameron Fenton secured a last-gasp score to seal 12-25 against the Dragons.
Neil Cochrane, Chris Dean, Duncan Weir, and Fenton all scored the tries as Edinburgh ensured Scarlets and Leinster will be continuing to look over their shoulders at the summit of the table.
Edinburgh travelled to Eugene Cross Park hoping to continue the momentum from their dramatic late victory over Ulster last time out when Weir slotted a last-minute drop goal to give the Scots a 17-16 win.
And the visitors were the better side in the opening half as they dominated territory and possession and looked the more composed of the two sides.
Edinburgh went ahead after only four minutes as the hugely impressive Sam Hidalgo-Clyne scored the first points of the game with a straightforward penalty in front of the posts.
Dragons were desperate to get themselves level and despite huffing and puffing in the opening 40 minutes the closest they came was a pulled drop goal from Dorian Jones, unable to slot between the posts.
The Dragons lost out to Benetton in the last round, faced with a tough task again after Edinburgh extended their lead on 24 minutes with the game's first try.
Lewis Carmichael rose highest to take the line-out and the Edinburgh pack drove over the line, with hooker Neil Cochrane at the back of the maul to touch down, with Hidalgo-Clyne adding the extras.
With Jones off, Dragons' Zane Kirchner had the perfect opportunity to reduce the deficit on 29 minutes though he too was unable to kick the home side's first points of the game.
Edinburgh continued their domination after the break as Dean hit the line at pace and raced over to extend his side's lead to 15-0 on 45 minutes, with Hidalgo-Clyne just off target on this occasion.
But Dragons were not about to wave the white flag and lock Rynard Landman nipped over in the corner to bring the home side back into proceedings, with Jones reducing the deficit to 15-7.
And the Welsh side found themselves back in the game on 67 minutes as Jones burst through the Edinburgh defence and offloaded to Landman to go over for his second score of the game – though a missed conversion kept the Edinburgh lead to three points.
From there the Dragons had momentum and looked likelier to score, only for veteran Weir to get his name on the scoresheet for Edinburgh – Nathan Fowles breaking through the Dragons defence and Weir finishing in style, though he was unable to convert.
The late Edinburgh salvo was completed in the final minute of the game, Fenton driving over to score the all-important bonus point score for the visitors.
Tries: Landman 2
Tries: Cochrane, Dean, Weir, Fenton
Dragons: 15 Hallam Amos, 14 Rio Dyer, 13 Zane Kirchner, 12 Jack Dixon, 11 Jared Rosser, 10 Dorian Jones, 9 Charlie Davies, 8 Lewis Evans (captain), 7 James Benjamin, 6 Aaron Wainwright, 5 Rynard Landman, 4 Joe Davies, 3 Leon Brown, 2 Liam Belcher, 1 Sam Hobbs.
Replacements: 16 Ellis Shipp, 17 Gerard Ellis, 18 Lloyd Fairbrother, 19 Harri Keddie, 20 Ollie Griffiths, 21 Sarel Pretorius, 22 Connor Edwards, 23 Jarryd Sage.
Edinburgh: 15 Dougie Fife, 14 Jason Harries, 13 James Johnstone, 12 Chris Dean, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 8 Bill Mata, 7 John Hardie, 6 Magnus Bradbury, 5 Lewis Carmichael, 4 Fraser McKenzie (captain), 3 Murray McCallum, 2 Neil Cochrane, 1 Jordan Lay.
Replacements: 16 Cameron Fenton, 17 Rory Sutherland, 18 Elliot Millar-Mills, 19 Cornell du Preez, 20 Luke Crosbie, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Duncan Weir, 23 Junior Rasolea.
Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Kieran Barry (Ireland), Simon Rees (Wales)